Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Naked Trailer

I'm about 20 hours in to stripping paint off the trailer. Layers upon layers of paint. I've used a chemical stripper until this point and will start sanding tomorrow. The windows and little splash guards above the windows need to be removed; unfortunately ALL of the screws have lost their grooves. I've tried everything to get them out: prying, drilling, a cheap screw extractor from Autozone... and nothing seems to be working-- or at least working fast enough for my schedule. I shelled out 20 bucks for a fancier screw extractor set today and am hoping it won't strip after one use like the last one did. The MSRP likely reflects the desperation felt by people trying to get dozens of corroded screws out of a vintage trailer. On the bright side, the trailer's skin is excellent shape.

60 years of screw corrosion

Hopefully this works.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Little House

Lots of crazy wonderful changes around here lately. Sadly, I'm way behind schedule on boat progress this summer. Happily, I have a new job that I love and I am starting graduate school in two weeks! 

I've also recently succumbed to the American anti-feudal impulse. 

While I don't have that plot of land yet, I do have a covered wagon I can roll across the country. This sweet little darling is all mine. Isn't she cute?

Ramon and I rigged up this super safe-looking wiring system to get the little lady home from Crocket, TX. The wires stretched all the way to the passenger seat of the pickup where I would cross wires whenever Ramon yelled, "Braking!" or "Left-blinker!" Our scheme worked-- no trouble with the law on the way home.

I now work (and will be attending school) about an hour and twenty minutes from our home on the ranch, and I realized that commuting over 50 hours a month isn't really my cup of tea.  I'd much rather spend that time on the boat, so I bought Minnie Mae to live in during the week.

She's an older gal-- 58 years young to be exact-- but she's in great shape. Of course, there are still lots of things to do to get her liveable in two weeks: scraping off a bajillion layers of lead paint, re-painting, re-caulking the windows, re-sealing the roof vent, installing AC, repairing some water damage in the closet (that was a fun discovery today), running new electrical, putting new gaskets around the window panes, testing and possibly fixing the plumbing, installing a porta-potty in the closet for late-night use, and deep-cleaning the interior.

I thought I'd document this little detour from the boat project here on the blog over the next two weeks. Boat postings should resume in early September.

This here is my Charles Ingalls. I never could have gotten Minnie M. home without him.